To launch this year’s Coleraine Borough Council’s Northern Ireland International Airshow sponsored by RSA NI which takes place on Saturday 31st August and Sunday 1st September, 93 year old Tom Lackey has just set a new World Record.
He completed a wing walk from Scotland to Northern Ireland as the oldest wing walker to cross the Irish Sea, as he stood on top of a 1942 fabric covered, plywood and wire biplane.
Tom was praised by onlookers and his close family as he arrived at City of Derry Airport on Thursday 29th August 2013. Flying ona vintage 1942 Boeing Stearman biplane flown by Mr Mike Dentith, Mr Lackey spent 1 hour and 27minutes in the air as he flew over the Irish Sea, departing from Castle Kennedy in Scotland.
Both pilot and wingwalker received an emotional welcome by his daughter Anne Joynson, his 16 year old grand-daughter Verity Joynson and family friend, Wendy Greatbatch. Mayor of Coleraine Councillor David Harding was one of the first to welcome Mr Lackey to the North Coast said, “this is an amazing achievement and we are in awe of Tom completing such a daunting task, for anyone of any age! I can not thank him enough and for the support of City of Derry Airport, for supporting the launch of Coleraine Borough Council’s NI International Airshow, sponsored by RSA, which will be held in Portrush this weekend. Tom’s achievements prove to everyone that the sky really is the limit!”
Inspired by the loss of his wife, Mr Lackey has since turned to charity and fund raising work in which he has raised over £1.25 million to date and was presented with the coveted ‘Pride of Britain’ award in 2011 for all his tremendous work. This is not his first world record, as in November of last year he completed 4 crossings of the English Channel for the Guinness Book of Records, from Dover to Calais and back, twice in succession!
Tom retired from business at young age of 79, which he says, “was way too early!”. Following his landing, he stated that, it was quite an experience although he wouldn’t do it again and he was pleased to see happy faces and his family waiting for him.
Mike Dentith will be displaying twice per day at the NI International Air Show being staged on Saturday 31st August and Sunday 1st September. Spanish beauty and model “Ainhoa Sanchez” from Madrid, the only professional Spanish acrobatic/dancing wing-walker in the world! has come to the North Coast especially for the air show where she has been in training for this weekend’s event.
The annual NI International Airshow sponsored by RSA is set to roar over Portrush this weekend, organised by Coleraine Borough Council this year’s FREE event will feature five jet displays including the world famous Red Arrows on the Saturday.
The Airshow event opens at 11am each day with air displays from 12noon until 6pm. The flyer can be downloaded from www.niinternationalairshow.co.uk or on Facebook and Twitter (Portrush Airshow). Alternatively contact Coleraine Tourist Information Centre on 028 7034 4723 or log onto Council’s website www.colerainebc.gov.uk